The special theory of relativity describes the motion and dynamics of objects moving at significant fractions of the speed of light.

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Reunion condition in the Twin Paradox

In the Twin Paradox two twins initially at rest in the same reference frame are separated and take different journeys through spacetime. Eventually they are reunited. What is the condition for the ...
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What is the difference between these two equation dealing with time dilation?

In my textbook, the time dilation equation is presented as $\Delta t' = \gamma \Delta t,$ where $ \gamma = 1/ \sqrt{1 - v^2/c^2} $. My understanding of this equation is as follows (correct me if I'm ...
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what is the kinematics of a particle with complex mass?

particles with real-mass have time-like kinematics ($ds^2 > 0$). particles with zero-mass have light-like kinematics ($ds^2 = 0$). particles with imaginary-mass have space-like kinematics ($ds^2 < ...
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Relativistic doppler effect in three dimensions

Consider a sphere that travels through space with a velocity $v$. I wish to investigate the relative intensities of the CMB on all points on the sphere. For the microwaves approaching from the direct ...
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2answers
682 views

Special relativity paradox and gravitation/acceleration equivalence

One of the features of the black hole complementarity is the following : According to an external observer, the infinite time dilation at the horizon itself makes it appear as if it takes an ...
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Does entanglement not immediately contradict the theory of special relativity?

Does entanglement not immediately contradict the theory of special relativity? Why are people still so convinced nothing can travel faster than light when we are perfectly aware of something that ...
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72 views

How to motivate this approach on Special Relativity?

One of the most common approaches to Special Relativity is that based on the two Einstein's postulates: The laws of Physics are invariant in every inertial reference frame The speed of light ...
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117 views

Sign convention for the Minkowski metric $\eta_{\mu\nu}$

In special relativity, one is confronted with a quadratic form called proper time, which is $c^2t^2-(x^2+y^2+z^2)$, $t$ being time and $x,y,z$ being the space coordinates. One usually introduces a ...
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124 views

Finding the total energy in centre of mass frame

I'm working through a problem in a special relativity textbook (Woodhouse) and I'm having some difficulty. I have to show that if I have a particle of rest mass $M$, total energy $E$ colliding with a ...
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34 views

Perception at relatavistic speeds

If one were to be traveling at near the speed of light, their mass would be $m_{rel}= m_0 / \sqrt{1 - \frac{v^2}{c^2}}$. For the mass to double the speed would have to be $86.6\%c$ [edit] To better ...
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About Lorentz Group

In definition of orthogonal matrices we say that the a matrix $A$ is orthogonal if $A^TA = I$, while for Lorentz Group it is written as $\Lambda^Tg\Lambda = g $. And we say that Lorentz transformation ...
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Threshold energy, does this indicate particle annihilation?

If we have a question on threshold energy like the following: Two particles A and B collide to create C and D. Find the threshold energy required for particle A given that particle B is at rest. ...
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272 views

Gravity's Rainbow

What is it? I've seen it in context of a few research papers such as Absence of black holes at LHC due to gravity's rainbow and Thermodynamics of black holes in gravity’s rainbow formalisms My best ...
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307 views

What is the slowest possible speed?

According to special relativity, nothing can go faster than the speed of light, and nothing can be distinguished to be in a state of absolute rest. So it makes me wonder: is there a slowest ...
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239 views

Faster than light signals and the price to be paid if we accept them : a very simple protocol

Most physicists currently understand entanglement as transferring information instantaneously, yet not violating causality. Is this really a satisfactory explanation, or should be look for something ...
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52 views

Boyles law & relativity

In relativity when an object approaches the speed of light, $c$,its volume decreases due to length contraction. As a thought experiment, consider a rectangular metal box travelling at a relativistic ...
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Is there a formula that gives the position of an object depending on the time, but which doesn't allow the object to surpass the speed of light?

I have found these two formulas: $v = at + v_0$ $x = \frac{1}{2}at^2 + v_0t + x_0$ a is the acceleration v is the velocity x is the position t is the time $v_0$ is the initial velocity $x_0$ is ...
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101 views

Plane curve transform to moving inertial system coordinates

As a non-phycisist I hope my question makes sense and is understandable. It deals with special relativity. I suppose there is a e.g. plane curve ( e.g. a circle ) given in the x-y plane of of an ...
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65 views

Proving the conservation of 4-momentum for a particle collision $A+B\to C+D$

Let me say that particle A hits particle B and two particles come out - C and D; In system S I can write: $$p_A^μ+p_B^μ=p_C^μ+p_D^μ;\tag{1}$$ here $p_N^μ$ is the 4-momentum. Using the Lorentz ...
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Origin of the Lorentz force from the point view of relativity?

I'm a physicist, when I'm working on the quantum spin hall effect, I recollected the high-school knowledge on Lorentz force and try to explain the origin of it, but didn't get it in the first glance. ...
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66 views

What it would look like to observe people with a different time flows?

As I learned, that the bigger gravity source you are influenced by the more slow time ticks for you, the farther away you are from a gravity source the faster times ticks. So Imagine two different ...
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66 views

Special relativity and Lorentz transformation

I recently learned about special relativity and different reference frames. The conversion from two inertial reference frames is given by Lorentz transformations: $$x' = ...
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676 views

Help understanding Bell's spaceship paradox

The problem statement of Bell's Spaceship paradox is this: Two spaceships float in space and are at rest relative to each other. They are connected by a string. The string is strong, but it ...
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3answers
79 views

How does an electromagnetic field oscillate if time does not pass for the speed of light?

As far as I'm aware, traveling at $c$ will prevent time passing due to time dilation. Electromagnetic waves rely upon oscillations to propagate. Since oscillations rely upon the passing of time, how ...
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Trying to understand one of Einstein's thought experiments

I try to understand Einstein's Relativity: The Special and the General Theory, chapter IX., "The Relativity of Simultaneity". Here's an online version: http://www.bartleby.com/173/9.html. ...
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Are reversible and irreversible processes frame dependent?

since it is all about time. If I have a look at an irreversible process from a frame where time runs really slow. is there a possibility of considering that process reversible from that frame?
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Rigorous computation of four-velocity

In Special Relativity we can consider spacetime to be the Minkowsky space $\mathbb{R}^{1,3}$ which is just $\mathbb{R}^4$ together with the non degenerate symmetric bilinear form $g$ that in some ...
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327 views

How can one motivate the relativistic momentum?

Motivating the classical momentum $\mathbf{p} = m\mathbf{v}$ is quite easy: it is meant to represent the quantity of motion of the particle, and since the mass is one measure of quantity of matter it ...
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77 views

Off-diagonal terms in metric for 4D space-time [closed]

Consider a delta between two events in 4D space-time written as a 4-vector, $x^\mu=(dt, dR)$. The time $dt$ is a scalar difference in time. The 3-vector $dR$ points some direction in space. One ...
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87 views

How to visualize the world while travelling near the speed of light? [closed]

I have been having some trouble with this for a while. I think in terms of vivid , moving images and i haven't been able to visualize this completely. I wondered if a person, like the Flash from the ...
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42 views

Double-slit experiment [closed]

Given the following wavelength: $\lambda = 1.75 \cdot 10^{-12}\ m$ This leads to the velocity of the electron (matter wave). First approach: $p = \dfrac{h}{\lambda}=m(v)v=m_e\gamma v$ [...] $v ...
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137 views

Graphene and relativistic dynamics

Is it possible to rewrite the Lorentz-transformations (for quantum particles) in terms of effective mass m* known from condensed matter physics? "From pencil lead to relativistic quantum physics" "A ...
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How does the Lorentz boost change if we introduce transformation to the minkowski metric

Let's say we have the Lorentz boost given by the $ \Lambda^\mu_\nu$ in the Minkowski metric $diag\{1,-1,-1,-1\}$. Now if I do a transformation on the Minkowski metric such that the new metric is ...
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Time Dilation: One observer at rest, two observers in motion

I am currently taking a course in Modern Physics mainly focused on Special Relativity and came up with the following problem: Let $O_1$ be an observer at rest. A second observer $O_2$ is moving to ...
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About the relativistic wagon simultaneity problem [closed]

I'm getting utterly confused with this problem. The situation is basically to know what events to take in one frame in order to see them synchronized in another. I sketched the situation as this: ...
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Deriving the equations for a moving inertial reference frame [closed]

I assume $c=1$ in the following derivation: In order to derive the equations for a moving inertial reference frame, I immediately wrote down the following: $$ x'=Ax+Bt, \tag{1}$$ $$t'= Dx+Et. ...
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67 views

Can a point in empty space be motionless with respect to light?

Being that the speed of light is constant throughout the universe, can a point in empty space be motionless with respect to light?
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119 views

Is it OK to see time dilation and (relativistic) mass increase as phenomena that avoid $c$ being reached? And how about length contraction?

I think I have been exposed since years ago to this line of reasoning: if $ v\to c $, then $ \Delta t \to \infty $. As $\displaystyle v=\frac{\Delta s}{\Delta t} $, it's like a natural reaction to ...
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1answer
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Parity transformation is proper orthochronous?

In 3+1 dimensional spacetime the parity transformation is $$P^\mu_{\;\,\nu}=\begin{pmatrix}+1&&&\\&-1&&\\&&-1&\\&&&-1\end{pmatrix}.$$ This is ...
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81 views

Biot-Savart law from relativity

Few days ago I came by a derivation of STR from Bio-Savart law. Since then I have been trying to derive Bio-Savart law from STR. The derivation mentioned previously used two parallel current-carrying ...
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2answers
81 views

Why does choosing a time break covariance?

I'm reading that in EM theory, in hamiltonian formalism, we choose a specific reference frame with a specific time, and that this breaks covariance. Why? Surely it's simple because it's just stated ...
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What is the mass of a sphere?

A solid sphere of mass M is rotating along an axis. We can consider it as a collection of large number of point masses, every point mass is moving with respect to center of mass with velocity which ...
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Can quaternion math be used to model spacetime?

Quaternions are commonly used to model 4 dimensional systems where the quaternion consists of a real 3 dimensional vector and an imaginary scalar. So on the surface Quaternions seem well suited to ...
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Does the algebraic number field used to define spacetime always have to be the real numbers?

When we talk about Minkowski space, do we assume the field $K$ we are using is the real numbers? Why couldn't spacetime be made up of the rational numbers or something? Also, I was reading Arnold and ...
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Physical interpretation of distances

Suppose we have a universe with only two distinguishable particles, neglecting gravitation. These particles start off next to each-other, ostensibly "touching" each-other and at rest. If it takes ...
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How can a Physical law not be invariant?

In Relativity, both the old Galilean theory or Einstein's Special Relativity, one of the most important things is the discussion of whether or not physical laws are invariant. Einstein's theory then ...
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What spacelike, timelike and lightlike really mean?

Suppose we have two events $(x_1,y_1,z_1,t_1)$ and $(x_2,y_2,z_2,t_2)$, then we can define $$\Delta s^2 = -(c\Delta t)^2 + \Delta x^2 + \Delta y^2 + \Delta z^2$$ which is called the spacetime ...
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Do all massless particles (e.g. photon, graviton, gluon) necessarily have the same speed $c$?

I suppose there was a discussion already on speed-of-gravity-and-speed-of-light. But I silly wonder whether all the massless mediators of four fundamental forces, i.e. Graviton: $g_{\mu\nu}$ ...
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Why do we restrict the maximal supercharge to 32?

Many supersymmetry textbook state that the maximal supersymmetry in any dimension has 32 hermitian supercharges. (Actually for lowest number of supersymmetry $N=1$ the highest dimension is $D=11$) I ...
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Is there any theory in physics that might support the existence of tachyons?

According to Einstein, we all know that light is the fastest thing and it's impossible to beat it's speed. But isn't there a way to go around this? I read somewhere that tachyons gain speed per the ...